Is It Possible We Are Looking for God in the Wrong Places?

I am in a season of waiting. I have been praying and occasionally fasting for something since 2008. It is a dream that God put on my heart quite some time ago. I still have faith that He will bring this dream to fruition. I have tested the dream to ensure it is Biblical, of His character and something that would advance the Kingdom of God.

We must objectively assess whether the thing we are pursuing is of us or of God and these are a few ways to complete that assessment. I did not ask for this dream, it just showed up one day deeply engrained into my spirit. When I think about it, I am filled with joy and see how God would be glorified. But it is not a reality.

I cannot tell you how many times I have prayed about it. There have been times where I have asked God to remove the dream if it was not to be fulfilled. It sometimes causes me pain to have a glimpse of what could be and then snap back into reality and recall how long it has been – the waiting, the hoping, the praying.

I tend to ask God to communicate to me in a very obvious way, a way I would not miss. If He is talking, I certainly do not want to miss it. And I can be oblivious at times. But I also wonder if I am looking for God in the wrong places. I tend to think that when He speaks, it will be like a thunder bolt or so obvious that I could never miss it. And sometimes He does communicate with us like that.

Yet, we see how God communicated with Elijah:

“The Lord said, ‘Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.’ Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, ‘What are you doing here, Elijah?'”
1 Kings 19:11–13 NIV

I am looking for the big, obvious revelation. Whether it is a street sign telling me the next step in my journey or a stranger walking up to me and handing me a quote from God that says “Go do X. Love, God”. And yes, He does talk to us that way sometimes, but I tend to think He speaks to us gently, in whispers.

If every time He spoke, the Earth cracked open around us or a tornado blew through, I think we would all have an issue. Instead, what if He is talking to us in those whispers we hear, also described as a still, small voice? We need to be close to Him and lean in even closer when He speaks. We need to write down what we hear lest we forget. We need to ensure what we heard is Biblical, aligns with God’s character, and advances His Kingdom and His Glory. If so, then we need to do what we hear as soon as we can. This approach opens up an ongoing flow of communication, we grow closer to Him, and we learn more about how He communicates so it becomes easier to hear Him.

Let’s pray.

Father in heaven, we thank You that You speak to us through Your creation, Your Holy Spirit, Your Word and other believers. Help us to hear You better. Help us to look for You where You are and hear You in the whispers. Thank you for loving us and never giving up on us when we miss Your whispers. In Jesus’ name we pray.